OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Sat Oct 10, 2015 9:53 pm

Well, I don't really have anything to add right now but I do always love reading through commentaries on stuff. Makes it all worthwhile and all!
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by c_nordlander » Sat Oct 10, 2015 9:54 pm

Continuing:
“Hey, leave me alone,” Janey snapped back “I just wanted to have a bit of fun!”
Needs a full stop after "back".
Janey answered Lisa’s exasperated question.
"Lisa's exasperated question" isn't really necessary. The dialogue itself makes it very clear that Lisa is exasperated. This is a good thing. No need to clarify it further.

Love the bit about how she doesn't want to try to identify the twins. Feels realistic.
“She’s not going anywhere.” The leaner twin, Sherri, said.
OK, this is a dialogue tag. It's not a separate sentence. That means that you should have a comma after the dialogue, and "the" shouldn't be capitalised. There are more cases where the dialogue has the wrong punctuation. I'm not going to point them all out (unless you want me to). You know what to do.

"leaving the two close enough to literally sew together." Good description, but I don't know whether "literally" adds anything. Might be a taste thing.

Typo: "the phone went went off"

"Lisa rolled over to the small cupboard by her bed and brought a stubby fingered hand down on the receiver and brought it up to her ear as she rolled back over, fully expecting some automated call." Kind of a long sentence (it could probably be split up in two), and one of the "brought"s could probably be changed to some other verb for more variety.

The prank call scene is funny.

Typo: "slammed receiver" is missing a "the".

Ah, rain at night. I always love that too. Great description of the storm.

"Any sounds made by it however were immediately muted out by an ear-splitting 'EEEEEEEEEEEEK!'" I'd put "however" after "were" instead. Still, might work the way it is.

"starfish head" is a great insult.

The argument is excellently written. Everything leads up well to the climax. And like I've said before, I like the little reversal you pulled where the reader realises that
Spoiler
The paragraph where
Spoiler
feels... not badly written, but a little too much telling instead of showing. What actually happens is great, and the sentence structure isn't bad or anything, it just comes off as a little bureaucratic and detached. But that's a minuscule nitpick. Writing good dynamic/action scenes comes with practice.

"but even a wimp could pull a few surprises when they went as berserk as Sherri looked ready to." I don't really like how this sentence ends. It feels a bit too verbose. Again, might just be my taste.

"thugs like you" Man, that's harsh. Lisa's reaction is very realistic, too.

Professor Taylor certainly seems appropriately patronising.

To be continued.
The noose draws tighter;
This is the end;
I'm a good fighter
But a bad friend;
I've played the traitor
Over and over;
I'm a good hater
But a bad lover.


Elinor Wylie, "Peregrine"
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by c_nordlander » Sun Oct 11, 2015 9:10 pm

Continuing. (I would have finished this review yesterday, but watching the stream took up a lot of my attention.)

Spellcheck: "tussled her hair" should be "tousled".

"Leaving only two upset twins and a mother who was starting to understand what her husband had against Ned Flanders." Heh, I like it! The fact that it's a sentence fragment gets on my nerves a little bit, but again, that's a taste thing.

"what happened to Terri" should be "what had happened".

"Marge just ignored his thinly veiled insult" I think this would be better without "just". Also, "thinly veiled insult" is kind of unnecessary since the dialogue made it so clear (you could just have "Marge ignored him").

You've given the twins' dad a very distinct character.

"Well two but learning Homer’s whereabouts could wait." Needs commas.

"She first had to deal with Lisa, who had been watching everything from upstairs just around the corner. Though she had darted back into her room by the time Mr Mackleberry had arrived." Not badly written, but beginning the second sense with "though" feels kind of clunky. I'm not quite sure how to fix it. It's good that it's two sentences, though; one sentence would probably have been too long.

"Someone like Bart was more than used to making his folks mad but something like this happened so rarely for Lisa, it was more than a little bit terrifying." Feels a bit much to have two "more than..." in the same sentence, especially since it doesn't add much in terms of content.

"have fell out" should be "have fallen out" (sure, slightly bad grammar is good for an informal touch, but this *is* Lisa we're talking about). Great description in all respects, though.

The next paragraph is very good. Well-written and shows Marge's gentleness.

"bezerkoid" needs an R.

Janey's description of what happened is very funny and in line with the show. Though I have a nitpick: "Or completely impossible as far as the last part was concerned" is over-explaining the joke a bit, and I think the paragraph becomes funnier without it.

I like Lisa's remorse. It's very much in character. The bit where she can't see the point in apologising rings true.

I really like Marge talking about her social life. Nice way of establishing a similarity between her and Lisa.

I like the way Marge solves everything.

"Fortunately she had the number for Moe’s Tavern memorized perfectly for occasions like this." Great line. I'd take out the "perfectly" (I mean, you either have a phone number memorized or you haven't), but again, up to you.

I like the ending, though the idea that Allison would treat Lisa that way (even in Lisa's fantasies) feels a bit out of character to me, given that she's supposed to be Lisa's best friend.
though probably more to the tune of ‘Lisa totally beat up Terri, punched her lights out, pulled her pants down, bit her head off and made her cry!’
I love it.

To sum up, I think this is a very good story. The first couple of pages are kind of slow, with not that much to pull the story forward other than "they're having a slumber party", but the plot really picked up once it got to the pillow fortress and the growing conflict between Lisa and the twins. There are a couple of nice twists as well, saving the story from being predictable. Like I said before, I really like how
Spoiler
If I have any problems with the plot, it's that nobody brings up the legitimately bad things Sherri and Terri did once things go south. I guess a lot of it was just low-level bullying, but someone should have at least called them out for stealing the cookies. Then again, I guess it could be a commentary on the way too many adults look at bullying: this idea that it's OK to treat someone like crap for years, but the moment someone shows up with a bruise or a wound, time to call in the police. Welp, I feel depressed now.

Everyone is perfectly in character, as far as I can tell. Lisa's inner voice is exactly like on the show. I like that you gave Allison some negative traits (like being overly critical): it fits with what we know of her personality and makes her less of a Mary-Sue.

In terms of writing, this is very good: most new writers start out way worse than this. I do have some nitpicks, but I think you'll find that most of them are technical stuff (punctuation etc.) that's easily fixable. Fix those problems, tighten up a few clunky sentences, and I personally think this is good enough to post on the finished stories board.
The noose draws tighter;
This is the end;
I'm a good fighter
But a bad friend;
I've played the traitor
Over and over;
I'm a good hater
But a bad lover.


Elinor Wylie, "Peregrine"
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Sun Oct 11, 2015 9:33 pm

Hm, might as well I guess. In between thinking of what else to do.

As for some other bits:
Spoiler
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by SirMustapha » Mon Oct 12, 2015 3:45 pm

I may be a little hypocritical by saying this, but writers should be very careful when writing fanfic motivated by what fans think or feel. Fans can be absolutely irrational and passionate about what they like and believe, and they can end up passing questionable judgements about things--especially characterisation. I'm not saying it's wrong to write a story with an intent of deconstructing a character's image or something similar. It's not wrong, but it's risky.
Spoiler
Otherwise, Chris is right: the writing is of high standard, and just a few fixes will make it as good as finished.
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Mon Oct 12, 2015 4:11 pm

Oh... Well I did do a little tidyup of the stuff Chris mentioned and some stuff that might have been missed but didn't sound right on the second go but I'm not sure I'm good enough to fix THAT much...
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Mon Oct 12, 2015 6:48 pm

Well, this one's the bit with typoes and sentences tweaked a bit since I already did that last night. Wasn't on main comp earlier today.
Spoiler
I'm not sure if I'll go over this fic again. Not just because I don't think I have what it takes to pull that part off properly (though if you wanna give that a go, Fernie, it'd be fine by me. Also probably educational since you understand a lot more than I) and well, between college units (being made to run 2/3 at a time? yay) and even later college hours (was up to four pm, now five) I'm not sure I'd have that much time where I'm not either arting, working or trying to write newer things. So chances are I'll just ditch it 'cause unless I can get a better end out of it, I probably won't ever consider it complete.

That said, it is fun discussing things like this. Can only learn from it, ect.
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Tue Oct 13, 2015 5:51 pm

Well I suppose I could try revising the ending a bit but I'm really not sure what'll be good enough so... I guess it'll be trial and error mostly.
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by SirMustapha » Tue Oct 13, 2015 6:57 pm

Spoiler
Regarding your story, remember what I said, ultimately it's your call. If you don't feel like changing it, just don't. Don't consider it incomplete just because one guy doesn't agree with one specific point (and also remember a quote that Chris once brought up: "Art is never finished, only abandoned."). You're the ultimate judge of what you do. Finally, I wouldn't rewrite your stuff, as I think that would be very patronising and rude on my part. I'm sharing my views, not trying to show "how it's supposed to be done". (and don't be fooled if I sound so self-assured and confident; deep down I'm an insecure little whiner, you know. :) )
Last edited by SirMustapha on Wed Oct 14, 2015 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Tue Oct 13, 2015 8:19 pm

Well it really is more of a "now that you mention it" thing. It probably would work better (but again, trial and error). 'Tis better that I get as much as I can right. Maybe I'm not the sort that'd be a hardcore earning writer but... if I have even the slightest potential to be close to that level I might as well. 'sides, might be a nice excuse to (try and) write a more emotional scene while already having the rest of it already written. (I actually had two potential ideas still in the works for something else but both require at least one rather intense emotional response to something)

That and I've halfway thought of some way to have it be a little lighter on Lisa while still having Marge try to be understanding on the other side too.

And honestly, I wouldn't think of it as patronizing. I suppose perhaps some detached "sample" might do but either way, I am one of those people that learns better from seeing it in action. Always was a shame I had a hard time getting redlines on art for that reason...
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by c_nordlander » Thu Oct 15, 2015 11:15 am

If you think your fic is finalised, then it totally is. No-one else than the author is entitled to decide that. And it's very good.

I partly disagree with Fernando, I guess you could say. It does make sense for Marge to be a bit stern, seeing how Lisa did in fact
Spoiler
And I don't think she's overly harsh; it's very clear that she loves Lisa and wants to sort this out in the best way. At the same time, Fernando's right: from what we've always seen on the show, she probably would be more protective of Lisa. I don't know. At the end of the day, it's your story. Some of us readers think Marge's characterisation at the end is a big issue; some think it's a minor one (me among them); others won't see an issue at all.

As for your own parents: seriously, you need to talk to your counsellor or someone. Parents owe their children basic respect, same as in any other relationship.
The noose draws tighter;
This is the end;
I'm a good fighter
But a bad friend;
I've played the traitor
Over and over;
I'm a good hater
But a bad lover.


Elinor Wylie, "Peregrine"
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Re: OPINIONS: The Slumber Party

Post by Nidotamer » Thu Oct 15, 2015 2:00 pm

Well, I'm seeing some stuff I can improve right now and I may as well do that in my own way. I've been a bit overworked this week so honestly I feel too tired to do much else other than type and move a mouse. Fortunately I can still write like that.

It's kind of a "if it can be done, might as well" and I think I have some idea of how I'm gonna do that!
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"Harry tore his eyes from his head and threw them into the forest. Voldemort raised his eyebrows at Harry, who could not see anything at the moment."
---- Harry Potter and the Portrait of what Looked Like a Large Pile of Ash
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